Best Offset Smokers Under $1000 – Consumer Reports
Offset smokers are your go-to if you want slow and low cooked smoked meat. Offset smokers may look intimidating, and in reality, it does take some time to master the skill, but once you have it under your belt, offset smokers will give you the best-smoked meat you can find. No matter how costly offset smokers may look, you can find some great smokers that only will satisfy all your smoking needs but provide additional facilities as well, that too within your budget. To make sure that you have the perfect smoker, we bring to you our review of the best offset smoker under $1000.
Before you can make a choice as to which offset smoker to purchase, there are a few things you should look out for to ensure that you decide on the right smoker for you.
Construction Quality and Insulation
A well-constructed smoker built with high-quality materials will allow you to have more control over how much smoke is in the cooking chamber, the distribution of smoke, and of course the amount of heat. Not only that, you can expect them to last longer, especially against the wear and tear caused by the smoke.
We recommend opting for bodies made from heavy steel that has at least ¼ inch thickness. Chrome of porcelain coating will also contribute to upgrading the quality of the smoker.
Source of Fuel
The fuel source is something you should particularly take an interest in, as your convenience and availability of the source are important. You have a choice between charcoal, wood pellets, propane, and electric current.
If you really want the smoked flavor and can handle it, the charcoal and wood pellets are what you should go for. You can even use a combination of the two, and take advantage of having smoky flavors and easy temperature control. If you think you cannot handle smoking using charcoal or wood yet, you can just go for propane or electricity.
Chimneys and Vent
You need to be able to control the smoke and heat in order to cook your meat right. This is the function of vents. Make sure that the smoker you choose has plenty of vents.
Another feature that helps with making sure you have the correct amount of smoke in the chamber and the quality of the smoke is right is chimneys. Chimneys essentially have two jobs, to allow the heat, smoke, gases to escape, and allows oxygen into the chamber from the intake damper.
Trays and baskets come in handy when it’s time to clean up water, or charcoal and wood. Other features such as side lids, access doors, and drawers also make cleaning an easy task. They also play a role when it comes to maintaining the smoker so that you can get good and long use out of it.
Size and Weight
Offset smokers are generally quite heavy and can weigh hundreds of pounds, so take that into account when setting up your smokers. There are smokers that have wheels attached to them for better mobility.
So if you plan on trailing your smoker with you to place, definitely keep an eye out for offset smokers with wheels. Measure the area where you will keep the smoker as well, and make sure that you have easy access to the side or back of the main chamber in order to reach the firebox and the grill gate protrude.
Best Offset Smokers under $1000
The Dyna-Glo vertical offset smoker has a stainless steel construction with a porcelain enamel charcoal chamber, so you know the smoker is made of good quality. The wide vertical design has a large capacity of 1890 square inches of total cooking space that is divided among six cooking grates that can be adjusted.
You will be making perfectly smoked foods thanks to its built-in stainless steel thermometer that indicates when the temperature is right for smoking. Clean up is quite easy as well with the charcoal and ash management system which allows you to remove the steel ash plan.
- Efficient fuel burn
- Large cooking capacity
- Easy to clean
- Built-in thermometer lets you know the exact temperature
- No wheels attached for easy transportation
Broil King 958050 Offset Smoker
The Broil King offset smoker makes our list because of its top notch design and construction. Made from 2 mm steel, the smoker has 625 sq. inches of primary cooking space that is spread across cast iron grates. So you know your food is going to be cooked evenly and thoroughly.
The impeccable air vent system uses Roto-Draft damper technology. This helps you adjust and have better control over the smoke. Cleaning of the smoker is made easy with the removable ashtray.
- Generous cooking capacity, enough for cooking for 15-20 people
- Even cooking with cast iron grates
- Easy to clean thanks to the removable ashtray
- State of the art ventilation system
- Has wheels for easy transportation
- Relatively expensive compared to other $1000 smokers on the list
Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker
This Oklahoma Joe’s Highland is made from heavy-duty steel and smokes in a total of 900 sq. inches of cooking space. The main chamber provides 619 sq. inches while you have an additional 281 sq. inches from the firebox chamber that can be used for grilling. The smoker’s reverse flow offset design makes cooking easier as the heat and smoke are evenly distributed.
You can bet you will be getting some delicious tasting food using this smoker. To add on to the taste factor, the fuel source is charcoal and wood. So you can use a combination of the two for the smoky flavor and controlled heat.
- Customizable setup: baffles are removable and the location of the smokestack is optional
- Suitable for cooler climates as the heavy-gauge metal can hold heat
- Firebox chamber can be used as a grill
- Easy ash cleanout by using the large firebox
- Smoke may leak out around the door
- Paint may wear off over time due to the smoke
Char-Broil American Gourmet Offset Smoker
The Char-Broil American Gourmet is on our list because of its versatility. You can use this smoker as an offset charcoal smoker, grill, and barbecue. Not only that, you can make use of both direct and indirect smoking. The firebox will allow you to do slow and indirect smoking.
You get a total of 1014 sq. inches of cooking capacity, with 739 sq. inches of just primary cooking space. The rest 275 sq. inches is for the secondary cooking area. This offset smoker has an adjustable chimney vent, as well as a firebox ash drawer in its list of features. The ash drawer makes cleaning an easy task to complete.
- Versatile design. Smoker, grill, and barbecue
- Cleaning is easy
- Indirect smoking and Direct cooking can be done
- Heat resistant firebox
- Unreliable and inaccurate temperature gauge
Oklahoma Joe’s Longhorn Reverse Flow Offset Smoker
Similar to the Highland, this Oklahoma Joe’s Longhorn is also a reserve flow offset smoker. Versatile in use, you can use the smoker to either simply offset smoke or reverse flow smoking. The firebox has a warming area that makes it suitable for indirect smoking.
You will have ample amount of cooking space, with just 751 sq. inches of primary cooking area and a total of 1060 sq. inches. The charcoal basket allows for the charcoal to burn longer and there is a door for easy removal and cleaning of the ash.
- Indirect smoking in the firebox
- The temperature gauge is accurate
- Ample amount of cooking space
- Lump charcoal is better suited for the smoker
- Prone to leaks
- Construction needs work
Royal Gourmet CC1830S BBQ Charcoal Grill with Offset Smoker
Yet another versatile smoker on our list, the Royal Gourmet can be used as a BBQ grill as well as an offset smoker. Controlling the airflow and temperature is made easy because of a multitude of factors such as many vents, side doors, and dampers.
The professional thermometer also adds to the accuracy of the temperature. The charcoal pan is huge, so you can put up to 5 lbs. of charcoal in it. The handle helps adjust the charcoal box for better heating.
- Good airflow because of side doors, dampers, and vents
- Easy to clean
- Extra storage
- Average temperature gauge
- Leaks through the gaps
- Paint on the firebox is susceptible to peeling and flaking
Char-Griller Smokin Pro Charcoal Grill with Side Fire Box
We have to start off by saying how attractive the Char-Griller Smokin is compared to other smokers on our list. Not only it is good to look at, but the wooden handles and shelves provide storage and workspace as well. You get enough cooking capacity of about 800 sq. inches.
If we talk about durability then the smoker has powder coating and cast iron grates which also helps with even and thorough cooking. The charcoal box has a double bottom to prevent continuous smoke and heat. It is removable as well for easier cleaning.
- Double bottom charcoal box
- Attractive looks and design
- Long warranty period
- Table attached for extra workspace
- Wheels for better mobility
- Gaps around the cooking chamber and the firebox
- Challenging to control the temperature
Yet another vertical offset smoker from Dyna-Glo, the Signature Series has a barrel design with a total cooking capacity of 1382 sq. inches. You can rest assured that with this smoker you will not run out of space.
You will have 5 chrome-plated cooking grates and a heavy gauge steel body for optimum cooking and smoking. You can double this smoker as a grill by using the offset firebox. The firebox comes with porcelain-coated cooking plates.
- Extra-large cooking space
- Durable and heat resistant
- Large wheels for easy transportation
- Firebox can be used as a grill
- Lack of ash clearance; cleaning can be a hassle
This list just goes to show that you do not need to spend too much to get a good offset smoker. If you are still confused, we recommend the Broil King offset cooker.